Toad Lane Rochdale – A Pen Drawing by Doodlher

Toad Lane is probably one of my favourite areas of Rochdale. It’s historical, it’s pretty, and it’s home to a fantastic pub. This won’t be the first time I’ve doodled Toad Lane. It featured as one of my first digital Rochdale doodles and also took centre focus in two of my handmade Christmas card designs. Despite this, I decided to draw the area again, but this time in more detail.

I allocated a double page spread in my trusty Moleskine sketchbook for the design. Pretty daring in my books as it meant I’d have to draw over the spine which was a new approach altogether.

I started by drawing 31 Toad Lane, which is now home to the Pioneer’s Museum. (If you’re not familiar with Rochdale history, it was inside this very building that the Cooperative movement was founded in 1844. What started as a small local society soon became the blueprint for cooperatives all over the world, and itself grew into the Co-Op as we know it today. Pretty impressive.)

I sketched the Pioneer’s Museum brick-by-brick until I eventually reached the first bay window of The Baum pub. If you’ve ever walked past, you’ll know that this window is inhabited by quite a spooky-looking fella. Named Garrett, he’s the mascot for Rochdale Ghost Walks, and he features in the doodle alongside the large doll house that also decorates this window display.

By the time I’d doodled up to the front door of The Baum, I knew the end was in sight. I was a bit worried that I might not have been able to squeeze in the gas lamp that illuminates the top corner of the building, but it turned out that I had plenty of room. Phew!

For the night owls, the blue gradient version of the Toad Lane doodle

choose your print size & colour

As soon as the pen sketch was complete, I photographed and uploaded the drawing onto my computer so I could begin the process of removing the sketchbook spine and start playing with backgrounds. I love mixing my pen drawings with digital colour. It’s a complete contrast of traditional and modern art mediums and I really enjoy the effect it creates.


“Choose between black & white, bumblebee yellow, and night blue”


Toad Lane will be my first print to ever be available to buy in this style. The more ‘traditional’ Doodlher black and white option will still be available, but if you fancy adding some POP to your wall, I highly recommend choosing one of the two colours.

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Win a Signed Print

I’m giving away a 8×10″ blue signed and mounted print of my Toad Lane doodle. Entry to the competition is taking place on my Facebook page and Twitter.

This competition is open to residents of the United Kingdom aged 18 years or over. There is no entry fee and no purchase necessary to enter this competition. By entering this competition, an entrant is indicating their agreement to be bound by these terms and conditions. Route to entry for the competition and details of how to enter can be found on the Facebook post and Twitter post. Only one entry will be accepted per person on each platform. Multiple entries from the same person will be not be included in the prize draw. Closing date for entry is 9pm GMT 30 November 2020. After this date, no further entries to the competition will be included in the draw. No responsibility can be accepted for entries not received for whatever reason. The rules of the competition and how to enter are as follows: Facebook: Entrants must post a comment in the competition post to enter, of which the content of this comment must be a story or memory relating to Toad Lane. Single word entries and non-related ‘spam’ content will not be considered as an entry. Twitter: Entrants must retweet the original competition tweet. Doodlher reserves the right to cancel or amend the competition and these terms and conditions without notice. Any changes to the competition will be notified to entrants as soon as possible by Doodlher on the competition Facebook post and Twitter post. Doodlher is not responsible for inaccurate prize details supplied to any entrant by any third party connected with this competition. The prize is as follows: a mounted 8 x 10″ Toad Lane print in blue. The prize is as stated and no cash or other alternatives will be offered. The prize is not transferable. A winner will be chosen at random by software, from all entries received and verified. The winner will be notified by DM on Facebook within 28 days of the closing date. If the winner cannot be contacted or do not claim the prize within 14 days of notification, I reserve the right to withdraw the prize from the winner and pick a replacement winner. The winner will need to provide a delivery address to which the prize will be posted. My decision in respect of all matters to do with the competition will be final and no correspondence will be entered into. By entering this competition, an entrant is indicating their agreement to be bound by these terms and conditions. The competition and these terms and conditions will be governed by UK law and any disputes will be subject to the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts of UK. The winner agrees to the use of their name and image in any publicity material, as well as their entry. Any personal data relating to the winner or any other entrants will be used solely in accordance with current UK data protection legislation and will not be disclosed to a third party without the entrant’s prior consent. This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook, Twitter or any other Social Network. You are providing your information to Doodlher and not to any other party. The information provided will be used in conjunction with the following Privacy Policy found here.

One last thing…

The arts is one of the most undervalued industries. Visual arts, music, dance, theatre, you know the list… We all consume it, but we all need it. It’s the good stuff that keeps us on top of our positive mental wellbeing. By reading this story about my doodle you are supporting the arts. So thank you for taking the time out of your day to give my thing an ounce of your attention.

If you’d like to buy a print and you can buy a print, thank you, each sale helps ensure my pens are topped up with ink and obviously helps pay my bills and all that jazz 🙂

Pass it on. Tap the buttons below to share the Toad Lane Rochdale vibe with your friends and family on Facebook or Twitter. Yay, go Rochdale!


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